The Role of Women and African Slaves in the American Revolution

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PROMPT: Analyze and discuss the crucial role women and African slaves played in the American Revolution and what they hoped to gain following the Revolution.

Throughout history both women and African slaves have fought for their place in the United States, however the American Revolution was the first stepping stone for both the African slaves and the women as they offered support in the fight for freedom. In the American Revolution, both African slaves and women played climacteric roles of support in the war that lead Colonial America to gain independence from British rule, through the pretense of eventual hope of gaining both liberty and freedom in the New World for themselves.

During the American Revolution thousands of women took an active role in the American armies, mostly stationing themselves at military camps to offer support to their male relations. Women's roles became more valued for their aid in the Revolution and were under the idea of "Republican motherhood" or mothers for the new nation. Most of these women, who participated in the American Revolutionary War, were wives and daughters of officers or soldiers. These women who maintained a almost constant presence in military camps, became known as “Camp Followers.” Although, these women were not considered to be a part of the army they were still included in the list of prisoners taken at Stony Point. Gillian Courtney, a Stony Point Battlefield State Historian, said, “Here at Stony Point Battlefield, there were 52 women who were captured with the British garrison on the night of July 15, 1779 by the American Corps of Light Infantry.”1 Women were considered to have little military function during the war, therefore their individual names were never listed in the records of the Stony Point Battlefield. Although it is supposed that the women’s duties as camp followers consisted primarily of cooking, mending, laundry, childcare, and nursing the sick, many other women found themselves in...
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